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Archives for July 2008

Wide Flange Steel Columns

Wide flange steel columns are used in structural design to add strength and stability to a structure that will support heavy loads. Wide flange steel column are most often used in commercial construction, such as the construction of high rise buildings. A structural engineer has many different types of columns and materials to choose from when designing a high rise building.

Columns Used in the Construction of High Rise Buildings

When designing high rise buildings, structural engineers may utilize several different types of columns to support the structure. When designing a structure, the structural engineer must consider the design of stud walls, laterally loaded columns, and built up columns. He or she must also consider the effects of loading, sheer, and moment on the selected columns of the structure.

Columns may be constructed of steel, wood, concrete, or manmade building materials such as composites, solid sawn lumber, and glulams. The structural engineer considers the limitations and benefits of using each type of column and selects a material that meets the design specifications and budget limitations.

Wide flange steel columns help disperse the weight load of a structure back into the outer walls of the structure, making the building more stable even when fully loaded with furniture, equipment, and people.

Structural engineering involves designing stable structures through the use of various known physical properties and theories. Mathematical equations help the structural engineer design sound structures such as high rise buildings, homes, and bridges.

Structural engineers often utilize structural design software programs to help them sort through the many options available when designing a building. Structural engineering design software helps structural engineers adhere to local, federal, and international building codes while designing a structurally sound building within the client’s specifications and budget.

Structural engineers use wide flange steel columns is designing structures in many different areas of construction. Wide flange steel columns are a cost effective way for structural engineers to design stable, high rise structures. Specific design elements can drastically affect the stability and visual appeal of a structure.

Wide flange steel columns are an important part of the structural engineer’s tool kit when designing high rise buildings. Structural engineers can use structural design software programs to assist them in selecting the proper building materials and design elements to achieve spectacular results.

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The Features and Benefits of Structural Engineering Software

Structural design software has many features and benefits for builders, contractors, architects, and even the industrious homeowner. Structural design software is a useful tool that saves time and money for anyone involved in building or remodeling structures. If you are considering purchasing structural design software for your business or personal use, this review of the features and benefits of structural design software will help you determine if an investment in structural design software is right for you.

Features of Structural Design Software

Not every structural design software program is the same. Some structural design software is very basic while other programs have extra features. Some structural design software is geared toward professional architects, contractors, and builders, and other programs are better suited for the homeowner remodeling his or her own house. A good structural design software program has features that are suited for a wide variety of uses and is easy to use, right out of the box.

A well-rounded structural design software program includes footing design, column design, and beam design. Structural design software should also include features for wood construction, steel construction, and manufactured building supplies.

An exceptional structural engineering software program also includes added features like flitch beam design, hip and valley beam design, international building codes, laterally loaded column design, local building codes, multi- span analysis, rectangular and continuous footing design, sheer and moment diagrams, steel angles, and wide flange steel columns.

Benefits of Structural Design Software

You may be wondering who uses structural engineering software. Architects, engineers, designers, and builders all benefit from using structural engineering design software. Structural engineering students and homeowners remodeling their home can benefit from structural engineering software.

Structural design software saves users time by streamlining the structural design process. A good quality structural engineering software program includes building codes that apply to your specific geographical location. This feature saves time by eliminating the extensive research and double-checking that would otherwise be required without the use of structural design software.

Structural design software also saves money. Not only does it cut costs by streamlining the design phase of construction, it eliminates costly mistakes and last minute alterations in the design of a structure. Using structural design software also ensures that structures meet all building regulations , thereby eliminating fines and costly alterations to bring a structure up to code.

Structural design software saves builders, architects, engineers, and designers time and money. Be sure to check out the features of a structural design software program before purchasing it, to ensure it meets your design needs.

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StruCalc 8.0 Beta Video

As we get closer to the release I will start publishing links to the new online tutorials. This is the first of the series done today with the beta version of the software. I thought this would be useful to those users who already own the program and are thinking about upgrading to get to see the new interface in action. It is much easier and quicker to use.

Also, if you are thinking about purchasing StruCalc this is a video of the version you will receive for FREE when you purchase a license of StruCalc 7.0. Hopefully you can see how big the difference is in the new program.

Watch the video here

Thanks again and keep watching we are getting very close.

Adam Wilson
StruCalc Development Team

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The Science of Structural Engineering

The science of structural engineering is constantly evolving. Structural engineers continually look to develop new architectural designs to please clients. As new building materials emerge, structural engineers are pushed to integrate these materials into new construction. They must study the way these materials react under the stress of load and predict how to support key areas strategically to maintain the structural integrity of the structure.

The science of structural engineering helps structural engineers build more stable structures while pushing the current limits of design as we know it. By studying the science behind the factors that affect the stability of structures, structural engineers can design and build structures that can withstand the forces of nature and loads, even under extreme circumstances.

Structural engineering relies on the predictability of nature. Forces like wind, water, snow, and weight affect building materials in a predictable manner. The structural engineer takes these reliable principles and designs a system of supports that will resist the warping nature of these elements. Structural engineers design structures to be flexible enough to move and flex without breaking. This requires a delicate balance of design and science.

The science of structural engineering is taught in colleges and universities around the world to prospective structural engineering students. Structural engineering students study the effects of nature on structures and common building materials. They study how a fully loaded building sags and moves in a strong wind. Then, they apply these observations to the structural designs they create after graduation.

Structural engineers apply the science of structural engineering to the structural designs they create in order to produce better structures. Special structural engineers develop designs for structures in earthquake regions. These special designs are crafted to help minimize damage during an earthquake and save lives by preventing the total collapse of a building.

The science of structural engineering involves the principals of physics, geometry, and basic mathematics. Structural engineering is a concrete science, with an artistic element. Structural engineers must also be able to design visually appealing structures according to a client’s specifications and be able to adapt well enough to work with architects and builders as well.

The science of structural engineering affects our everyday lives, but many people never stop to think about the strength and stability of the homes they live in, the office they work at, or the bridge they drive across. Structural engineering enhances the lives of people throughout the world.

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Collar Tie Design Preview

It has been awhile since we posted any development progress so I thought I’d drop by and give you guys an update. Rest assured this doesn’t mean we haven’t been working as hard as always it’s just a long process!

This is a sneak peek of StruCalc’s newest design module just integrated yesterday. The new Collar Tie Design Module is the newest form of user input in StruCalc 8.0. We put the controls on the diagrams so you know exactly what and where to enter the correct information to make your designs quick and accurate.

I shrank the screenshot down so you can also see StruCalc 8.0’s full new interface. All the familiar controls are in a left hand navigation bar allowing quicker and easier access to all the information for your current member. No more multiple forms here! It’s all in one place on one screen. Some video’s coming shortly will highlight the new navigation and design process that truly makes StruCalc 8.0 the next generation of engineering software.

As you can see the collar tie allows inputting of the rafter dimensions, a ridge point load, a roof live and dead load, roof pitch, bracing applied to the bottom of rafters, and a double eave live load. The properties of the rafters can be designed on the left hand bar and after choosing a placement for the tie StruCalc will calculate the size and type of collar tie the user needs for an adequate design. It also will give the information needed to correctly design the connection.

We hope everyone is as excited as we are about the new interface and design features. Our productivity has certainly increased since we started using the new program and we know your’s will to. Keep us posted with your great feedback we enjoy hearing from our users and look for some very exciting news in the next two weeks!

Adam Wilson
StruCalc Development Team

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Structural Engineering and Geometry

Structural engineering and geometry are intertwining subjects. Since the very first Egyptian structural engineers began building pyramids, geometry has been used to help solve structural stability problems. Geometry has been woven into the development of structural engineering for centuries.

What is Structural Engineering?

A structural engineer’s goal is to design structures that can both support and resist loads. A structural engineer designs structures and analyzes them for structural soundness. Structural engineering is closely related to architecture.

What is Geometry?

Geometry is a branch of mathematics that deals with the size, shape, and relative position of physical elements. Geometry also deals with the properties of space. Geometry looks at the length, width, height, and space of an object. Basic geometry is taught to high school students all across America.

Structural Engineering and Geometry in History

Examples of structural engineering intersecting geometry studies can be found throughout history. Some examples are even well known.

The Virtual Work Theory Structural Engineering and Geometry at Work

Structural engineering and geometry have evolved together over the years. Daniel Bernoulli, along with Johann (Jean) Bernoulli (1667-1748), is credited with formulating the theory of virtual work. The virtual work theory provides builders and structural engineers with a tool that uses the equilibrium of forces and compatibility of geometry to solve structural problems.

Archimedes: Structural Engineering and Geometry in History

The Greek engineer, Archimedes studied geometry extensively in his quest for building better structures and machines. Geometry played a large part in Archimedes’ experiments.

Euclidean Geometry, Preparing the Way for Structural Engineering

Euclidean geometry is also credited with contributing to modern day structural engineering. The ancient Greek mathematician Euclid wrote about Euclidean Geometry. Euclid’s book, Elements, was the first known written explanation of geometrically principals.

Geometry has strongly influenced the development of structural engineering. The principals researched in studying geometry have shaped structural engineering into the precise science we have today. Ancient Greek principal taught centuries ago are used today to create structurally sound high rise buildings, innovative shopping centers, and single family dwellings.

Structural engineering and geometry influence the way buildings are designed and built today. Geometry is an important part of the structural engineer’s industry.

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